As we all know, job interviews are intensely stressful occasions. If you REALLY want the job, the stakes are also incredibly high and you might feel a slight mistake could cost you the chance at landing the job. Given the pressure, some people are tempted to fudge their accomplishments and background a bit. They figure if adding a few years of experience that they'll triumph over other candidates, and what the interviewer doesn't know won't hurt them, right? WRONG
Lying is a risky strategy with huge repercussions. As more social networks surface more and more information and recruiting tools that dig into candidates' work history become more sophisticated. It becomes easier to bring lies to light.
There are better ways to put your best capabilities and experience on display. If you fib on the following in an interview, it will come back to haunt you.
- Education You went to college but did not finish, yet you may be tempted to say you finished a degree. The company you interview for will verify your degree with college transcripts and calling the alumni board.
So when in doubt - be honest about your education.
- Your Accomplishments During the interview, you will be asked about your skill set and accomplishments with the previous/current company. Again, it's tempting to inflate your accomplishments, however, hiring managers will check out your claims in detail.
In another scenario - if you're hired on strength of false accomplishments, you may be expected to exhibit similar performance. You'll only be setting yourself up for failure.
- What you're being Paid This is one of the trickiest parts of an interview. Some interviewers will ask you flat out - what are you making now? It's best to offer a range or tell them that your salary is competitive with the industry. Inflating a number is a BAD idea.
What you love to do
It's important to break down your passion and goals, however telling an interviewer that you love something that you don't really like, can result in disaster. Let's say you tell an interviewer that you love finding and destroying all kinds of software vulnerabilities - then once you're hired, they put you on a heavy-bug hunting detail. And now you're stuck doing something you hate.
Whether you were Fired
Sometimes a hiring manager will ask you flat out if you were fired from your last job. Don't lie. Previous employers will often tell a recruiter or hiring manager only dates of your employment and not the reason you left. However, a prospective employer can still find out reasons for your termination from any number of sources.
So if you are asked this question - don't panic. It's important to keep control and don't come off as defensive. Say that you weren't a good fit for your last organization and that you learned some good lessons - provide examples and that you're ready to move on. :)
No badly how much you want the job, inflating your talents, skillset, accomplishments, will only reflect badly on you. So be honest and true to yourself. After all, you are selling yourself, so why not be authentic? And once you are hired, you can learn new skill and will be able to add new accomplishements to your resume.